For the first time since 2006, the University of Indianapolis Women’s Soccer team has won in the NCAA tournament with a 1-0 shutout win over Walsh University. Head Women’s Soccer Coach Holly Cox said it was an evenly matched and exciting game.
“Walsh is a very good side. They came in as the number two seed and we didn’t deviate from how we played the season. There weren’t too many clear cut opportunities. But when we got the opportunities to put the ball in the back of the net, we did,” Cox said. “We weren’t troubled too much in the game. Sophia [Saucerman] and the back line did what they needed to do. But it was a very evenly matched game, an exciting game. We just put the ball in the back of the net when it counted.”
The Hounds took four shots on goal compared to Walsh’s four shots, according to UIndy Athletics. However, freshman goalkeeper Sophia Saucerman ended the day with four saves to keep the shutout alive. Cox said keeping a clean sheet was the key to victory and that it is always the plan for the team.
“That’s something that we pride ourselves on at UIndy, we’re organized defensively so to score goals on us, you really have to work hard and break us down,” Cox said. “So we always go into each game with the same mindset of ‘clean sheets win games.’ So we’re gonna work hard defensively and we’re going to stay organized, stay compact and make the other team really work and create, in order to try and get the ball in the back of the net.”
The Hounds will stay in Findlay, Ohio, where they played Walsh, to face the hosting team and second seed University of Findlay on Saturday Nov. 23 at 1p.m.. The team had the opportunity to watch Findlay play against Rockhurst and freshman midfielder/back Alexi Hardie said they are similar to the University of Southern Indiana. Cox said the team will make some adjustments to play Findlay, but in the end it’s going to be about which team plays better. Hardie said it is the chemistry of the team that has gotten them this far.
“I just feel like we’re a really special team this year,” Hardie said. “Our team chemistry has been amazing, so I feel like that’s what got us this far.”